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Looking ahead in the AFC West

Now what?

The 2009 AFC West season is abruptly in the books.

We thought it would last at least a week longer. But the Chargers closed the books Sunday in a surprising 17-14 home loss to the Jets. An AFC West team hasn’t been to the Super Bowl since Oakland made it in the 2002 season. Thus, the longest division Super Bowl appearance drought in the NFL continues.

So, the offseason is upon us.

While player movement and draft talk will heat up in the coming weeks and months, there are some things to keep an eye on in the division. Here is a checklist of some of the more important things that could be on the horizon in the division:

The Cable watch: Oakland owner Al Davis still hasn’t decided whether he will keep or fire Tom Cable. A decision could come this week. Maybe.

Rivera is free: If the Buffalo Bills -- or perhaps Oakland -- want to talk to San Diego defensive coordinator Ron Rivera about a head-coaching job, he is available. Rivera reportedly turned down chances to interview in Buffalo and in Seattle when the Chargers were still playing.

Turner extension: The Chargers are expected to finalize a contract with Turner soon. He has one year remaining on his contract. The Chargers’ loss Sunday should not affect the team’s plan.

New coaches in Denver: The Broncos have to replace longtime offensive coaching staples Rick Dennison and Bobby Turner. Dennison and Turner left for promotions in Houston and in Washington, respectively.